4/10: A Day in the Life

Ok, countdown time: only 20 days left here in Philadelphia! That means it’s time to get down to business and finish checking things off my Philly to-do list. But before I spend the next few weeks busily finishing final papers for class and frantically running around to all the city’s must-see spots, I wanted to take a brief pause. Most of my posts have focused on my overall experiences in Philly, but I thought it would be good to write about what the more micro-level, daily experience is like. So here it is–my recounting of a typical day (in this case, mainly based on yesterday, 4/9):

7 am: Alarm goes off. I wait a bit before rolling off my air mattress, grabbing my laptop, and heading out to the living room so as not to wake my roommate. I check email and surf around the web a bit, then make a quick breakfast (maybe some avocado toast or yogurt with fruit and granola). I also pack my lunch, then go to get dressed, brush teeth, etc.

9:05 am: Running a few minutes late, I grab my bag and my lunch and head out the door. I take the elevator down and walk outside. It’s brisk, so I decide not to walk the full 35 minutes to work. Instead, I walk three blocks to the Race-Vine subway station on the Broad Street Line. I ride the subway two stops to Walnut-Locust and walk the 15 minutes to the Rosenbach museum. My walk takes me along Walnut St., which is the ritzy retail/shopping area, to Rittenhouse Square, which is a very wealthy area with nice apartment buildings surrounding a small park-like square.


The Rosenbach entrance on Delancey St.


9:40 am: I buzz at the door to get let into the museum. I head down to the basement kitchen to unpack my lunch and hang up my coat. Then I head up to the 4th floor to my desk, which is arbitrarily situated in the Registrar’s office. I check in with Alice, my supervisor, who gives me some projects to work on for the day. This includes writing a press release for an upcoming event, scheduling some posts on our Twitter and Facebook pages, and brainstorming ideas for social media content related to our upcoming exhibitions (which include Bloomsday, the day celebrating James Joyce’s Ulysses, and the Alice in Wonderland 150th Anniversary).

12:30 pm: I head back down to the basement kitchen for my lunch break. I chat with the museum staff while we all eat.

1:20 pm: I switch gears and head to the Reading Room on the 3rd floor to do some work for my other supervisor, Kathy. I sort through old 1920s and ’30s letters and newspapers to find anything interesting related to the original Alice in Wonderland manuscript, which was purchased by the museum’s founder (Dr. A.S.W. Rosenbach) in 1928 for £15,400. The manuscript is coming to the Rosenbach later this year for Alice’s 150th anniversary, so the information I’m gathering will be used for that exhibition.

4:30 pm: With work done for the day, I grab my stuff and start the walk back to the Walnut-Locust station, where I will take the subway back up to Race-Vine. I’m feeling a bit homesick for Seattle, so I listen to Death Cab for Cutie’s new album as I walk. Check out one of my favorite songs below:

5:15 pm: I arrive back at the loft, and my roommate Liz gets home soon after. We’re going to a Sufjan Stevens concert tonight at the Academy of Music, so we each take this break to make dinner. I make pasta with veggies and pesto, then sit down to watch half an episode of X-Files (which I’ve been bingeing on Netflix).

7:30 pm: We walk 20 minutes to the Academy of Music at Broad & Locust and go in to find our seats. We’re up on the third level, but we have a great view being right on the front edge of the balcony. After the opener, Cold Specks, Sufjan Stevens and his back-up band come out on stage. They play song after song (all beautiful and heartbreaking, typical Sufjan) with some very cool accompanying light and projection effects.


10:30 pm: After an amazing and uplifting concert, Liz and I walk home. I end up going to bed late, though, since I find that my air mattress has a hole and is quickly deflating (sigh). I try to patch it up, deciding I’ll deal with it tomorrow, and settle in for a good night’s rest after a long day.


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